Powell responds to U.S. Steel settlement

PITTSBURGH, Jan. 31 – State Rep. Lindsay Powell, D-Allegheny, released a statement on the recent courtroom settlement between environmental activists and U.S. Steel, applauding the $20 million pollution control upgrades at the Clairton Coke Works as a positive step forward.

"Mon Valley residents have been breathing in toxic air for far too long. The recent settlement with U.S. Steel is a step in the right direction, but it should have never come to this,” Powell said. “We cannot overlook the fact that this settlement is the result of years of neglect and mismanagement. The Clairton Coke Works should have never allowed emissions to reach such dangerous levels in the first place.

"An 80% reduction in air pollution is certainly a welcome change, but let's not forget that it should have been zero emissions from the beginning. Clean air and water are a fundamental human right. Our communities deserve to breathe freely without fear of contracting chronic respiratory illnesses, due to unchecked corporate negligence. I’m hopeful that this settlement will serve as a deterrent to would-be polluters going forward."

Powell represents the 21st Legislative District in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, which includes the Lawrenceville and Strip District neighborhoods, Millvale and Etna boroughs, and Reserve and Shaler townships in Pittsburgh.